Adding a Receptacle for a Garage Door Opener
December 31, 2007
I’m adding a garage door opener to an attached garage. I want to wire a receptacle in the ceiling for the opener. There is already one receptacle on one of the walls. I want to replace that existing receptacle with a GFCI receptacle and wire off of it to the receptacle in the ceiling. However, there is already two cables going to the existing receptacle and the instructions with the GFCI doesn’t tell you what to do if you want 2 loads and 1 line to be wired to a GFCI receptacle. Please Help!
If you look at the back side of your GFCI receptacle there are 2 holes in each location for the wires. This allows you to put 2 wires under the load terminals or the line terminals. However, I do not recommend doing this. I would twist the wires together with an approximate six inch pigtail and only place one wire under each terminal.
You also mention placing the wires to your garage door opener receptacle under the load terminals. I do not recommend doing this either. If you place these wires under the load terminals, then the garage door opener motor may cause your GFCI receptacle to nuisance trip. If the GFCI receptacle trips while you are not at home, you won’t be able to open the garage door until you reset the receptacle. This is a major inconvenience during bad weather or if you forget your house key.
I recommend twisting the wires from the power supply and the new garage door opener receptacle together with an approximate six inch pigtail and connecting the pigtail to the line side of your GFCI receptacle. This will send constant power to your garage door opener at all times.
Now the garage receptacles are supposed to be GFCI protected. However, you do not need to GFCI protect the garage door opener receptacles or receptacles for a dedicated appliance (refrigerator or freezer) in the garage.
I created a wiring diagram that should help you with the terminations. This diagram only shows the terminations at the GFCI receptacle. The bottom terminals are the line side and the upper terminals are the load side.
Click image to enlarge
Do you need assistance with your electrical wiring project? Please visit my DIY Electrical Wiring Help from a Master Electrician page. Where I provide electrical wiring tips, expert electrical advice, answers to your electrical questions and electrical consulting & design services over the phone, via instant messenger or via email.
- Adding An Outside GFCI Receptacle To Your Home
- Wiring 2 Receptacles, 1 Light Switch and a Light in a Shed
- Wiring a Duel Fuel Stove, Repairing a Garage GFCI Circuit and Sizing the Circuit for 2 Electric / Hydronic Baseboard Heaters
- Advice for Planning Your Electrical Service in a Garage
- Installing GFCI Receptacles in Existing Kitchen Circuits